Shardul Thakur and his journey has been that of a typical underdog who has undergone all the hardships in life but due to his perseverance and hard-work has come up the ranks.
Shardul Narendra Thakur is an Indian professional cricketer, born on 16 October 1991 in a town of Maharashtra named Palghar. His role in the team is as a bowler who bowls right-arm medium-fast and bats right handed. He is a hit the deck bowler who can also swing the ball away from the right-handers. Currently, he is the lead pacer of Mumbai in domestic cricket and also a member of Indian cricket team.
Shardul’s town was 87 km away from Mumbai and he had to catch early morning Mumbai-Local trains(notorious for being filled with people) to come here for practice. He caught people's eyes when he hit 6 sixes in 6 balls in school cricket.
In November 2012, he debuted in domestic cricket against Rajasthan. He could not make his debut memorable as he took only four wickets at an average of 82.0 in his first four matches. At the end of the season, Mumbai team management asked him to lose some kilos and as he was hardworking and passionate about his career, he came back fitter. In the next season, he picked up 27 wickets at 26.25.
In the Ranji season of 2014-15, he emerged like a boss and finished the season on joint-top with 48 wickets at an average of 20.81 in 10 fixtures. He also completed five five-wicket hauls in the same season.
His glorious performance gained him a place in India A squad for him to play four-day fixtures against Australia A and South Africa A. Later, in the same year, he was embodied in the team of Board President's XI to play a practice match against South Africa, wherein he claimed four wickets. He continued his mind blowing performance in the 2015-16 season of Ranji Trophy. In the final of the tournament, he led Mumbai to win the title by taking 8 wickets.
Owning to his glittering performances in the domestic circuit, Thakur was snaffled up by Kings XI Punjab in the 2014 IPL auction for a base-price of Rs 20 lakhs. The gutsy medium-pace bowler made his debut against Delhi Daredevils in the 2015 season and took one wicket in his stipulated quota of four overs.
When CSK and RR were suspended and a mega-auction happened, Thakur was snaffled up by Rising Pune Supergiants and played under the captaincy of MS Dhoni and Steven Smith. In January 2018, he was bought by the Chennai Super Kings in the auction and again went on to play under MS Dhoni.
Thakur played less matches in 2019 Indian Premier League for Chennai Super Kings. Though he played in the Final where he took 2 wickets against Mumbai Indians. Chennai however failed to win the IPL title in 2019 after Thakur got out LBW when 2 runs were needed of the final delivery.
After his consistently amazing performance in first-class cricket, he was called up for Indian squad touring to West Indies but did not get a chance to play any game. Shardul made his One Day International (ODI) debut on 31 August 2017 against Sri Lanka Cricket. He has played 11 ODIs till date and taken 11 wickets.
Shardul Thakur made his Twenty20 International (T20I) debut for India against South Africa on 21 February 2018. In March 2018, he was selected to play in the 2018 Nidahas Trophy. In a match against Sri Lanka he took a career best 4-27 to bring the game back to India's favour, winning the Man Of the Match award. He finished with 6 wickets from 5 matches at an average of 29.33. Shardul Thakur in his relatively short T20 career has played 15 matches and taken 21 wickets at an average of 21.
Thakur is relatively a green-horn in the international Test arena, having played only a single match in his career up until now. He was first named in India's Test squad in May 2018 for the
one-off Test against Afghanistan but could not make the cut in the playing XI. However a few months later, in October 2018, Thakur made his Test debut against the West Indies, making him the 294th player to represent Team India in Tests. Unfortunately, his debut ended after bowling just 10 deliveries due to suffering from a groin strain in his right leg. Thakur since then has been on the fringes of the Test team as the current Indian pace attack is fully stacked.
Coming from humble beginnings, Shardul was born on 16 October 1991 in a town of Maharashtra named Palghar and his father's name is Narendra Thakur. The right-arm pacer is one of the eligible bachelors going around in the circuit currently.